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Entries in U.S. House race in Montana (2)


Gianforte enters upcoming contest to replace Zinke

(HELENA)- As expected, former Gubernatorial candidate Greg Gianforte says he will seek the nomination to replace Congressman Ryan Zinke.

Zinke is in the running to be the Interior Secretary in President Donald Trump's cabinet, which would create a vacancy in Montana's lone Congressional seat. A U.S. Senate committee is expected to act on Zinke's nomination early next week. 

There had been speculation since Zinke's nomination was announced that Gianforte, who lost his bid to unseat incumbent Governor Steve Bullock last fall, would be interested in the GOP nomination for a special election. 

KXLH TV reports Gianforte confirmed he will seek his party's nomination in a letter to Republican leaders yesterday. 

At least nine other candidates from the major parties have also expressed an interest.


Economic issues tops in Montana Congressional race

The debate was carried live on both PBS stations and streamed on the Montana PBS website(MISSOULA)- Spurring the economy, and how to cut government spending, are the dominate themes Tuesday night, as candidates for Montana’s lone seat in the House debate in Missoula.

Republican Steve Daines of Bozeman, Democrat Kim Gillan of Billings and Libertarian Dave Kaiser of Victor gathered in the Missoula studios at Montana PBS in a debate done before the cameras, but not in front of a live audience. The 90-minute debate was broadcast statewide. 

All three had ideas to create jobs in Montana, ranging from better worker re-training programs to cutting red tape.

“Let’s change our focus, and focus on the companies, the individuals in the United States who are going to use our talent and make sure they’re going to create jobs for the future," said Gillan. "I think the strategy we need to do is to work with Republicans and Democrats instead of starting from the extremes and find a way we can get the economy back on track.”

Kaiser, running for office for the first time, sounded a continued theme of cutting the size and influence of government. 

“All the waste, all the duplicate services out of the federal government. We’ll save an enormous amount of money. The also with regulations that are dated back to the 40s, 50s, 60s. We can eliminate them and let businesses do what they do best and not be impeded by the federal government.”

"we’ve got to attack the $16-trillion debt," said Daines in response to the jobs question. "It creates tremendous uncertainity. We have countries like China that we owe 1.1-trillion to. And so it’s going to take some broad, comprehensive bi-partisan support to get that done. These are big, big issues and the clock is ticking. We need to get to the people’s work back in Washington.”